I recently visited this fantastic City with a girlfriend, flying from Southampton Airport. We stayed at The Ibis Belfast City Centre Hotel; it was adequate for what we wanted and in a good position for site seeing. The buffet breakfast was also only adequate!
Places to go and pubs/restaurants we used!!
Opposite the Europa Hotel (most bombed hotel in Europe!) – The Crown Liquor Saloon. This is a must, although touristy the décor and atmosphere is great. It is Belfast’s most famous Victorian gin palace – say no more! We ate a delicious sandwich, bowl of chips and obviously drank some gin!
Next door to The Crown in Great Victoria Street is Robinsons. Established in 1895 it houses 5 different venues under one roof. A Saloon Bar, Bistro upstairs, nightly, live Irish music in Fibber Magees, dance in the Roxy Nightclub or have a singsong in the Karaoke bar. We ate in the Bistro one night, good value and choice. Fibber Magees is a must, music starts around 9pm so we got there early to get a seat. Great atmosphere and dancing!
City Tour is also a must – best way to see the sights, especially the no go areas between the religious groups. City Hall was also an interesting visit, along with obviously the Titanic experience. Bistro 401 and The Galley Café at the Titanic Experience have a wide choice of yummy delights for you to choose!
We took a train up to Ballymena to visit my travelling companions relatives. In case you are in the area we dined at a really delightful hotel called the Tullglass House Hotel.
The Giants Causeway was a day trip and another must. We had lunch at The Nook, a pub with much more atmosphere than the main café at the Causeway. We sampled the fish chowder, delicious. Wonderful scenery along the Co. Antrim coast and a stop off at The Londonderry Arms Hotel in Carnlough was interesting. It was owned at some stage by Winston Churchill, a signed letter is in one of the lounges.
On our last night we ventured opposite our hotel to the Folklore restaurant, situated above Cosgroves Bar. It’s described as a quirky experience – the tables are painted with folklore pictures. Last orders are 8pm (!), the food OK but in our opinion only worth a visit if you’re knackered after a day out and can’t be bothered to walk anywhere. Could have used the restaurant in hotel but as we were not too enamoured with the breakfasts we went out!
Sadly we did not have time to visit Crumlin Road Gaol on this trip… next time!
Three nights, four days booked with Newmarket Holidays, was excellent value for money and a lovely way to get a taste of Northern Ireland.
An overall score of 17/25 for our eateries. Average cost £££ Reported by SM
(This sounds so good myself, my husband and two friends have just booked the same trip in Oct! CJ)